Saturday Wedding Sunnybrook Drive-In’s Latest Featurette
SANATOGA PA – Serial entrepreneur Chuck Gulati, who elevated the drive-in movie to what might be considered a socially distanced art form at his company’s Sunnybrook Ballroom entertainment and events center, is hosting something new and something related Saturday (June 20, 2020). Sunnybrook will be the venue for what Gulati thinks may be the first pandemic drive-in wedding.
The ballroom, on North Sunnybrook Road, like other businesses was forced to close its doors in March when the COVID-19 outbreak struck. As state restrictions began slowly loosening in May, it was Gulati’s idea to open up an impromtu drive-in movie theater – ticket price, $20 per car – on the venue’s ample parking lot. It’s been a regularly sold-out hit, and attracted national interest.
So what could top that? Cue the organ!
Sunnybrook’s “next level” in open-air broadcasting will be the marriage of a couple who is not identified in a media release, but whose wedding is planned to be larger than the 25-person crowd-size limit the state currently imposes to reduce spread of the virus. Accommodating the overflow was the problem. For the answer, Gulati and Sunnybrook sales director JoAnne Paquette turned their gaze from the Sunnybrook wedding garden (below) back to the parking lot.
They’ve enlisted the assistance of Pottstown-based cable television station PCTV and The Hill School to film the wedding ceremony that will be held in the garden on Sunnybrook’s south side. It will be simultaneously live-streamed to fill the inflatable movie screen in the lot just a little farther south. That’s where wedding guests, who could not join the bridal party and parents in person, will probably honk their congratulations after the knot gets tied.
The wedding vows, and all other sounds and circumstances, will be heard too on their FM radios, thanks to an accompanying low-frequency transmitter.
Paquette and Gulati recognize the drive-in wedding represents another promotional coup for Sunnybrook, but Paquette reports the future bride and groom are equally pleased with the plans. “All weddings are special, but this one goes above and beyond,” the company’s release noted. “This couple will be able to share their amazing story of how they got married in the middle of a pandemic like no other.”
And, yes, a reception will follow, again in the parking lot. The couple will enjoy their first dance on a specially-built stage, set-up in front of the screen, so guests can be part of it too. The reception meal will be delivered to each car by golf cart.
There was no word on whether it includes popcorn.
Photos supplied by Sunnybrook Ballroom